Indie soul artist Bradd Marquis is back on the scene with his new EP, Love. Marquis evokes Chicago stepping soul with the opening track "The One U Love." Marquis sings with a gentleman's confidence well beyond his years who wants to express his feelings to a significant other.
"Eventually" is up next and is an excellent transition from the opening number. Now before I heard the rest of the album, I felt that Marquis was going for a concept album. Let me back it up right quick. Bradd is singing about finding his queen in "The One U Love." "Eventually" finds the crooner cutting loose the ones he's not serious about. And settling down with Mrs. Right. Marquis vocals come across smoother than a fine cognac.
Marcus Machado makes a guest appearance on "The Thrill Is Gone." Where the duo sing with a stick to your bones gusto that reminded me of the southern juke joints my grandfather would tell me about. I liked the bluesy arrangement on the track and would love to hear what it sounds like in concert.
Marquis successfully appeals to the younger crowd on "Who Let You Go." Quite honestly, I could see an MC dropping a Hot 16 due to the production. The song instrumentation also has a cinematic vibe going for it. So I could see the song playing as background music in an episode of either Insecure or Power Book II: Ghost.
Love's lead single, the lush and harmonious Always, is up next. Marquis, who recently jumped the broom, is clearly singing to his new queen. The track is something all fellas can relate to, particularly when you find the right one. I've personally always identified more with R&B than Hip Hop since I'm a romantic at heart. Always is easily one of my favorite songs of 2021.
Up next is Love's title track. Now, if Marquis took us to Chicago with "The One U Love," then "Love" is all about the soul in the streets of New Jersey and New York. Marquis sings the song with the grit and passion of an outtake from Curtis Mayfield’s Superfly soundtrack. Marquis closes out the Love EP with No War, which reunites him with Marcus Machado. A message song about the negativity going on in the world is still strong a year later. Marquis released it as a promotional single last year.
Avoiding trap-style beats, auto-tune, and an attempt to cater to a youth audience, Bradd Marquis, has another winner on his hand with Love. Throughout seven songs, Marquis not only sings with elegance and tact, but he also gives us a project that will keep you smiling.
Top Songs: "The Thrill Is Gone," Love," and "Who Let You Go.
Final Grade: B+
Love is available on all streaming platforms.